Something for the weekend

  • By: Matt Briggs
  • Last Updated: December 26 2013, 11:12 GMT

Our Matt Briggs seeks out some value ahead of the festive action on the Boxing Day coupon.

Sean Dyche's Burnley look like being a late Christmas gift
Sean Dyche's Burnley look like being a late Christmas gift

Sky Bet Championship - Middlesbrough v Burnley

The 2/1 about table-topping Burnley winning a Middlesbrough on Boxing Day looks like it might well be a late Christmas present.

The Clarets sunk Blackpool at Turf Moor to climb to the Championship summit last weekend with star man Danny Ings on target again.

The 21-year-old hot-shot has 17 goals this season and has more than filled the void left by Charlie Austin, and Burnley will once again be looking to Ings at The Riverside.

The Clarets have won half of their 10 away games but they've not won on the road since October, however don't let that put you off Sean Dyche's men because they've had a run of tough away dates including Leicester and Nottingham Forest.

They more than held their own in the televised clash with Leicester and they were well worth their weekend win over Blackpool and will arrive on Teesside in good form.

There's a few layers who don't seem too keen on Dyche's men and that's obvious when they're offering 2/1 about the league leaders away at a side who have won just three of their 10 home games. With the majority of the bookies going much shorter than 2/1 though I don't expect it to last too long.

Sky Bet League One - Brentford v Swindon

Despite losing manager Uwe Rosler to Wigan, Brentford are team on the up and the 20/21 about them sinking Swindon at home on Boxing Day looks too good to refuse.

The Bees are a point off the top of the League One summit in third place and on a 10-match unbeaten run. Mark Warburton's men brushed Preston aside at Deepdale last weekend and back on home soil Clayton Donaldson and co should be too good for a Swindon side who are struggling on the road. Swindon have lost six of their 10 away games with their two wins coming away at Colchester and a 4-0 success at Rotherham, which looks being the exception rather than the rule.

Anything they can grab at Griffin Park will be a bonus but with the hosts eyeing top spot I fully expect them to make it win number eight from 11 and their sixth straight success at home, but be quick because the near-evens shot won't last long.

Sky Bet League Two - Rochdale v Mansfield

Mansfield fans called for the head of boss Paul Cox after their demoralising 3-2 home defeat to Accrington last time out. A narrow defeat to a relegation rival may not sound too damaging, but the manner of the reverse could have lasting effects.

The Stags were looking like 2-1 winners before conceding two goals deep into stoppage time to come away with nothing. That's 11 League Two games without a win for Cox's men, whose rough and tumble style is not cutting the mustard in the basement.

And just how demoralising the defeat will prove to be we won't know for sure until they run out at Spotland against Rochdale on Boxing Day. But my money will certainly be on the hosts and at 10/11 Dale look a good proposition to make eight home wins from 12.

Keith Hill's men will be looking to capitalise on a decent showing at promotion rivals Southend when they returned with a 1-1 draw and they will be eager to keep in touch with leaders Chesterfield, who are five points better off.